Given his trajectory, whatever Oscar Isaac chooses next happens to be an event in itself. He’s this era’s Al Pacino, a proven stud who can elevate any source material. Last year, he got audiences on their feet for Ex Machina, drowned living rooms in tears with Show Me A Hero, and gave us the Wedge Antilles we deserved via Poe Dameron in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Now, he’s ready to team up again with Ex Machina’s Alex Garland for his next sci-fi spectacle, Annihilation.
Based on the first book in Jeff VanderMeer’s Southern Reach trilogy, the story follows a biologist trying to find answers behind her husband’s tragic disappearance. A search that leads her to join a government expedition into an area that’s been sealed off as an environmental disaster zone, only it’s not: it’s a natural wonder with a mythic dark force within. Garland, coming off an Oscar nomination for his Ex Machina screenplay, adapted the story himself.
It’s unclear what role Isaac will play just yet, but Natalie Portman is set to lead as the biologist, topping an all-star cast that includes Jennifer Jason Leigh, Gina Rodriguez, and Tessa Thompson. Scott Rudin, Andrew MacDonald, and Allon Reich will produce, and if all goes to plan, this film could potentially tip off into a trilogy, as Rudin and Paramount also optioned the rights to its followups: Authority and Acceptance.
Shooting begins this spring in London.